Kūkūwai | Preschool (2-3.5 years)

How does Kūkūwai reflect the Preschool Room?

We have been gifted the name of Kūkūwai for our room and we will be guardians of the pukeko and the raupo. Kūkūwai is the name for wetlands and as a room we have identified this as an important local feature that draws us to living in this area.

We will work actively to protect the people, environment, knowledge, culture, language, and resources important to Ngāi Tahu for future generations.

We acknowledge the wetlands are a home for many bird species, particularly providing protection to the pukeko. Within the wetlands the raupo is home for the pukeko, it offers shelter and protection to them. In Preschool we offer a homely and safe environment for all our tamariki. The raupo is a vital plant in this habitat. The raupo was an important food source for the Māori and has been used as a survival food in many countries.  The top of the yellow spike hand shaken lets loose edible pollen which was made into bread.  The starchy rhizome was eaten raw or boiled as a vegetable.

Once the pukeko feels safe and confident, they are ready to explore and are known for their bold scheming and determination. The adults nurture their eggs and their young just as we, the kaiako, nurture and care for our preschool tamariki. A safe, stable and responsive environment supports the development of self-worth, identity, confidence and enjoyment together with emotional regulation and self-control. As both bird and tamariki build their skills and knowledge they are ready to explore further and extend their experiences in the wider world around them.

The colours we use throughout preschool will reflect our local features.  The raupo is a rustic brown and the pukeko a vibrant turquoise and the wetlands a deep shade of green.

Kūkūwai / Preschool (Wetlands) and they will be kaitaiaki (guardians) for Pukeko and Raupo (bullrush).